Now that Brian Kelly has won the endorsement of Florida's Urban Meyer, the best coach in college football when he was active, the wisdom of the Notre Dame move to pick him is looking better than ever.
As ESPN reported in April 2008, Meyer came back to Cincinnati to visit his father, who was having health problems. Meyer is a former player at Cincinnati who left in 1986. His sister still works at the university.
A friend on the coaching staff, Tim Hinton, invited him to watch practice. Meyer came away deeply impressed with how Kelly ran the show and how the team had maximized its potential.
Kelly and his staff traveled to Florida in the summer to visit with Meyer and to talk football with the Gators' coaches.
"It's one of the few times I allowed a staff to do that, but that was because of the respect that I had for what I saw that day (in April '08)," Meyer said.
That is the kind of endorsement that Kelly could not pay enough money for. Meyer has simply been the best coach in college football of his generation.The fact that he was so deeply impressed with Kelly speaks volumes.
Although he is out of football coaching for the foreseeable future, you can bet that Meyer and Kelly will talk.
Ironic isn't it, that Meyer was the chosen one for Notre Dame before he picked Florida and sent Charlie Weis to South Bend? Now Kelly is very likely the closest thing left in college football to Meyer.
Roll on this new year!